California Will Now Offer Picking Up a Year’s Worth of Birth Control Pills in One Prescription

Birth control pills (Salon)

Birth control pills (Salon)

Once again, California blazes the way for the rest of the nation. Last week, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law that states that women will be able to pick up a year’s supply of birth control pills at one time. Before this law passed, pharmacists were only able to dispense birth control in three-month supplies. (And I know I’ve had trouble with even that.)

Worried about if your insurance will cover it? No need: the new law also requires that the new year-at-once be covered in healthcare plans.

The new law goes into Jan. 1, 2017.

The Fifty Shades Darker Trailer Is the Most-Viewed Trailer Ever in Its First 24 Hours

Jamie Dornan, 'Fifty Shades Darker' (EW.com)

Jamie Dornan, ‘Fifty Shades Darker’ (EW.com)

Guess who’s back? Back again?

Not Slim Shady. Everyone’s favorite telecommunications boy-genius/BDSM enthusiast/master manipulator Christian Grey and blank slate/everygirl/victim Ana Steele. Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson reprise their roles as the aforementioned twosome in the installment based on E.L. James’ second book Fifty Shades Darker.

The first trailer for the movie debuted on Wednesday, Sept. 14th and has already become notable for setting a new record: The trailer became the most-viewed trailer within 24 hours of its release.

The Fifty Shades Darker trailer was viewed 114M times within the first day of its release. It performed well across digital platforms, and received 2.5M views on the movie’s Facebook page only in the U.S. Internationally, the trailer was viewed 74.6M times, over double the number of domestic views.

The previous record for most-viewed trailer in the 24-hour period after its debut was 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens. That trailer received 112M views.

With these viewing numbers for an initial trailer, I think we can reasonably expect that the second movie will do fairly well in box office take when released. If past trends are anything to go by, the first movie sold a lot of advance tickets and became the “sixth R-rated movie to gross more than $500 million.”

Fifty Shades Darker will be released Feb. 10, 2017.

 

 

Trends: Emmys 2016 Diversity

Rami Malek, Emmys 2016 (Telegraph UK)

Rami Malek, Emmys 2016 (Telegraph UK)

The Emmy Awards aired this past Sunday night, honoring the best in TV. The twin themes  that popped out from the night were diversity and inclusion. And they played out in many ways.

Mr. Robot actor Rami Malek won Best Actor in a Drama Series, becoming the first Egyptian-American to do so. Malek also became the first non-white actor to win the award since 1998, when Andre Braugher won for Homicide: Life on the Street. On the actress side, Black-ish lead Tracee Ellis Ross was nominated for Best Actress in a Comedy Series. Though she didn’t win, Ellis was the first Black woman to be nominated for the award in 30 years; Phylicia Rashad was nominated in 1986 for The Cosby Show. Ellis was only the fifth Black woman ever to be nominated for Best Actress in a Comedy Series.

Inclusivity also prevailed behind the camera. Comedian Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang won Best Writing for a Comedy Series for Ansari’s Netflix series Master of None. (Ansari was also nominated for Best Actor in a Comedy Series.) Women directors were honored: Jill Soloway won Best Directing for a Comedy Series for Amazon’s Transparent, and Susanne Bier won Best Directing for a Limited Series, Movie or Dramatic Special for AMC’s The Night Manager.

Diverse narratives are gaining more traction. Transparent actor Jeffrey Tambor won Best Actor in a Comedy Series for the second consecutive year for his role as a transwoman.

It was good to see some progress made this year in terms of inclusion, but there’s still a long way to go.

 

 

#ThrowbackThursday: Viola Davis Wins an Emmy, 2015

Viola Davis, Emmys 2015 (Betches)

Viola Davis, Emmys 2015 (Betches)

At the Emmys this past weekend, actress Viola Davis was nominated for Best Actress in a  Drama Series for her lead role in ABC’s “How to Get Away with Murder.” Though she didn’t win on Sunday night, she won the award in 2015, and made history in the process. Davis became the first Black woman to win the Best Actress award.

Crazy that seemingly simple milestones are still only now being surpassed.

Gonorrhea Will Become Untreatable Soon

Cosmo Kramer, 'Seinfeld' (Pinterest)

Cosmo Kramer, ‘Seinfeld’ (Pinterest)

Here’s some downer news to start your day: Sexually-transmitted disease (STD) gonorrhea has become resistant to certain antibiotics.

Earlier this month, the World Health Organization (WHO) released new treatment guidelines for the STD. Gonorrhea isn’t the only STD that’s become drug-resistant; strains of chlamydia and syphilis have also begun resisting treatment.

The common STD most affects women ages 20-24, with 820K new cases throughout all demographics cropping up per year. Worldwide, 78M people contract gonorrhea each year.

Gonorrhea is becoming drug-resistant at the same time that STD rates are rising. In 2014, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) reported that rates of gonorrhea rose 5%+, which was the first increase in the U.S. in eight years.

The STD now cannot be treated with penicillin and doxycycline, among other drugs. The WHO estimates that completely new drugs will be needed for treatment within the next five years.

The Teen Birth Rate Is Declining

Teenage girls with pregnancy test (Young Adults)

Teenage girls with pregnancy test (Young Adults)

When I was growing up in the ’90s, teenage pregnancy was just a fact. It was depicted in movies and on TV, and you probably knew at least one girl in your school who got pregnant.

But teenage pregnancy now seems so…dated. Times have changed. Having kids young and outside of wedlock isn’t a big deal anymore. And I feel like I’m not seeing teen pregnancies focused on so much anymore (granted, that might be because I’m no longer a teen myself).

There’s a good reason for this: the teen birth rate is decreasing.

According to the U.S Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of Adolescent Health, the teenage birth rate in the U.S. has actually been decreasing for over 20 years. In 1991, there were 61.8 babies born for every 1k teenage girls. In 2014, there were 24.2 babies born for every 1K teenage girls. Quite a drop.

Even the year-over-year drops can be steep. The 2014 number is a 9% drop from 2013, where 26.5 babies were born to every 1K teenage girls. And the 2015 number of 22 babies per every 1K teenage girls is a 8% decrease from 2014.

For a longer-term view of how the teen birth rate has declined from the previous decade, CNN has the scoop:

Since 2007, the year-to-year decline in teen birth rates has been between 7% and 9%…The number of teens becoming moms has dropped by a total of 54% from 2007 to 2015.

That’s huge! We’ll see how small the number of teenage pregnancies eventually gets.

 

Trends: Latina Actress Firsts

 

Melissa Villasenor (Remezcla)

Melissa Villasenor (Remezcla)

Earlier this week, new additions to the “Saturday Night Live” cast were announced for the upcoming season. Among the three new cast members is comedian Melissa Villasenor. Villasenor’s hiring is significant because she’ll be the first Latina cast-member since “SNL” debuted 41 years ago.

How in the hell did it take Forty. One. Years?!?!?!

Villasenor’s hiring is just the latest achievement for Latinas in the entertainment industry, and she’s not the first to bust down a barrier.

Mexican actress Dolores del Rio worked in Hollywood from the 1920s until the ’40s, and achieved cross-over success with American audiences. She was the first Mexican actress to do so, and she worked with Hollywood luminaries such as Fred Astaire. (Fun fact: In the 1933 film “Flying Down to Rio,” del Rio danced with Astaire in the same film where he first paired with Ginger Rogers.)

Actress Rita Moreno overachieved with the firsts. Not only did she win the Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 1961, but she won the same award at the Tonys in 1975. Moreno went on to be the second person ever to get the EGOT honor (that is, she won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony).

Villasenor’s hiring opens the door for more diversity at “SNL,” but more Latina achievement in entertainment.